Rockleigh Grange | NSW Environment, Energy and Science

Culture and heritage


Rockleigh Grange

Item details

Name of item: Rockleigh Grange
Type of item: Built
Group/Collection: Residential buildings (private)
Category: House
Primary address: 40 Edward Street, North Sydney, NSW 2060
Local govt. area: North Sydney
All addresses
Street AddressSuburb/townLGAParishCountyType
40 Edward StreetNorth SydneyNorth Sydney  Primary Address

Statement of significance:

Important association with original house and resident, the artist, Conrad Martens, with property relatively intact. Secondary associations with administration of Catholic Church and the Australian Papal Visit of 1970. Also owned (and altered) by prominent Australian politician. Interesting architecturally for its' altered form. Major early mansion on the North Shore, with long colourful history.

Heritage Inventory sheets are often not comprehensive, and should be regarded as a general guide only. Inventory sheets are based on information available, and often do not include information on landscape significance, interiors or the social history of sites and buildings. Inventory sheets are updated by Council as further information becomes available. An inventory sheet with little information may simply indicate that there has been no building work done to the item recently: it does not mean that items are not significant. Further research is always recommended as part of preparation of development proposals for heritage items, and is necessary in preparation of Heritage Impact Assessments and Conversation Management Plans, so that the significance of heritage items can be fully assessed prior to submitting development applications.
Note: The State Heritage Inventory provides information about heritage items listed by local and State government agencies. The State Heritage Inventory is continually being updated by local and State agencies as new information becomes available. Read the OEH copyright and disclaimer.


Physical description: Large two storey building with ground floor of ashlar sandstone, painted white, with face brick second storey with hipped gable roof of terracotta tiles with projecting gables to the facade. Dentillated bargeboards, dentillated string courses, tall chimneys of brick with articulated quoins moulded stucco bands in vertical and horizontal strips, three-facet oriel windows, a gable-roofed entry porch to the ground floor and boxed bracketed eaves are features.This building is designed in the Federation Queen Anne style.
Physical condition and/or
Archaeological potential:
Major Alteration


Historical notes: Land part of grant to Edward Wollstonecraft and on Wollstonecraft's death in 1832, land passed to the control of his partner, Dr. Alexander Berry and his wife, who was Edward's sister Elizabeth. Soon they sold some estates. Here, famous artist Conrad Martens built his 1840's stone house and art studio. With his wife and family he lived here until he died in 1878. Altered out of recognition by later owners, including Hon. John Hughes, Minister for Justice, it was sold to the Church of Rome. The first Apostolic Delegate, Cardinal Cerreti arrived in 1915. Pope Paul stayed here (the only place in Australia) 30th November - 3rd December, 1970. The Papal Nunciate moved to Canberra in 1978 and the house became a wing of the Catholic Teachers' College of nearby Mount Street, now part of the NSW Catholic University.

Historic themes

Australian theme (abbrev)New South Wales themeLocal theme
6. Educating-Educating Education-Activities associated with teaching and learning by children and adults, formally and informally. (none)-
8. Culture-Developing cultural institutions and ways of life Religion-Activities associated with particular systems of faith and worship (none)-

Assessment of significance

SHR Criteria f)
This item is assessed as historically rare regionally.
SHR Criteria g)
This item is assessed as historically representative regionally. This item is assessed as aesthetically representative locally. This item is assessed as socially representative locally.
Integrity/Intactness: _
Assessment criteria: Items are assessed against the PDF State Heritage Register (SHR) Criteria to determine the level of significance. Refer to the Listings below for the level of statutory protection.


Heritage ListingListing TitleListing NumberGazette DateGazette NumberGazette Page
Local Environmental Plan I081502 Aug 13   
Within a conservation area on an LEP     

Study details

TitleYearNumberAuthorInspected byGuidelines used
North Sydney Heritage Study Review19930810Tony Brassil, Robert Irving, Chris Pratten, Conybeare MorrisonTB May 1992 Yes
North Sydney Heritage Review2002 John Oultram  No

References, internet links & images


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Data source

The information for this entry comes from the following source:
Name: Local Government
Database number: 2180810

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